Municipal Attorneys in Wisconsin
Comprehensive Legal Support in the Metropolitan areas surrounding Madison, Wisconsin Dells, and Manitowoc
Whether we represnet the municipality or a private client, our attorneys know that effective municipal advocacy requires an exhaustive understanding of a local government entity’s laws and how they intersect with state and federal laws. Municipal governments and their employees will often need knowledgeable legal representation to ensure compliance, mitigate risk, and avoid litigation.
Our Wisconsin based municipal lawyers offer a full range of legal services to local government entities. Our team at West & Dunn is prepared to represent municipal agencies, individual government employees, and elected officials, and we can serve as general counsel or strategically collaborate with existing legal teams. We are extensively familiar with the nuances of municipal law throughout the state, including its cities and counties, and can provide the capable guidance you need to successfully navigate many types of compliance issues and disputes.
Our Wisconsin municipal attorneys can assist with matters involving:
- Land use, zoning, environmental issues, and planning
- Ethical concerns and potential conflicts of interest
- Municipal corporation compliance, recordkeeping, and litigation
- Government real estate
- Contract preparation, negotiation, and interpretation
- Employment discrimination claims and other employment disputes
- Taxation and finance issues
- Workers’ compensation
- Wisconsin Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) Compliance
- Consolidation and government layoffs
- Municipal litigation, arbitration, and mediation
- Open meetings law compliance
- Public records law compliance
When at least half of a municipal body’s members gather to discuss or conduct government business, they are subject to Wisconsin’s Open Meetings Law and Public Records Law. This typically includes all local boards, commissions, agencies, and councils that were established under the direction of a municipal government.
When a sufficient quorum will be reached, the Open Meetings Law requires the body to provide sufficient notice (in non-emergency situations, usually at least 24 hours) to the local community that a meeting will take place. All meetings must also be open to the public and held in accessible spaces. Closed sessions are permitted in some circumstances, but certain additional notification requirements must be met.
All actions taken by a municipal body must generally be recorded and preserved. The public then has a right to request and inspect copies of these records under Wisconsin’s Public Records law.
Some municipal bodies inadvertently violate provisions of the state’s Open Meetings and Public Records laws. Violations can result in financial penalties, and repeated offenses can erode public trust and leave a body or employee exposed to potential litigation. Our team of legal professionals at West & Dunn can counsel local governments in these areas and will work to facilitate total compliance.
Our Municipal Services
Municipal law can become relevant in a wide variety of areas and determine how a local government serves its community. We understand how to analyze municipal charters, bylaws, ordinances, and all other legal elements that determine how a municipality can safely operate. Should the need arise, we also offer related criminal defense and civil litigation representation at the trial and appellate levels.
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The professional skills and commitment Attorney Dunn has consistently shown in each of my appeals is confirmed by her success.- Tedd Welch, Vietnam Veteran
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